Power of genetics explored at free Science World lecture

Thu, Jan 25, 2024

Genetic technologies are pushing the frontiers of science by offering new solutions for human health and agriculture, says a Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) expert.

“Whether the average person is aware of it or not, the use of genetic technologies is all around us. Genetic tools are improving the way we produce food and promising benefits in health outcomes. The Covid vaccine was the quickest turnaround that we’d ever seen in vaccine production. Why? Because they used genetics,” says Dr. Paul Adams, director of the Applied Genomics Centre at KPU.

Adams will offer a free public lecture at Science World in Vancouver on Feb. 15 entitled, “The Power of Genetics: Building an Innovative and Sustainable Future in Agriculture.” The presentation, part of the ongoing KPU Science World Speaker Series, will focus on the evolution of genetic technologies and the possibilities they hold for improving the sustainability of agriculture. 

Dr. Paul Adams inside the Applied Genomics Centre.
Dr. Paul Adams inside an Applied Genomics Centre lab at KPU Surrey.

Adams will explore various applications of genetics, most having widely-understood benefits, such as genetically-guided plant breeding to grow more resilient and productive crops.

“Instead of taking years or decades, when you understand the genetics you can produce favourable outcomes much faster just by selecting appropriate parents using genetics, not even genetically engineering them,” says Adams.

Following the presentation, researchers from KPU’s Applied Genomics Centre will host interactive stations exploring genetic technologies. Light refreshments will also be served.

The event takes place Thursday, Feb. 15 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. (doors open at 6 p.m.) at Science World, 1455 Quebec St. in Vancouver. Admission is free; guests are asked to register in advance.